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"Dick Cooter" Profile

"I fire a 125 cubic foot wood burning kiln, which I consider a partner in the work. Although I choose labor intensive methods, I consider myself a production potter. I make functional pots and consider the user to be the final contributor to the work."

- Dick Cooter -

Since childhood Dick Cooter liked to make things. Over the years he has made houses, furniture, guitars, kilns, cars, motor cycles and many, many pots.

Cooter attended the University of Iowa and the University of Minnesota. He majored in studio art and studied ceramics with Warren MacKenzie and John Reeve. He follows the tradition in which making a pot is a collaboration among clay, fire, potter and user. The potter seeks the tension among them so that each element has its place and none dominates for too long. All of his work is wood fired, sturdy, bold and reflects the process of making them. Simple decoration enhances the rich surface created by firing for a long period of time. The traces of the artist's hand are both an antidote for and protest against increasing uniformity. Impressions made in the soft clay reveal his tie to the work and to the landscape where it is made.


Selected Exhibitions:

Nov 2010

Gallery Gen, New York City, NY. An exhibition with potters Warren & Nancy Mackenzie, Robert Briscoe, Paul Dresang, Maren Kloppmann and Jeff Oestreich.

May 2010

Grand Hand Gallery, St. Paul, MN. A three person exhibit.

Feb - April 2010

Northend Art Gallery, Superior, WI "Clay Country". Exhibit by Jim Grittner and clay artists of the western Lake Superior region.

May 2009 - 2010

Guillermo Cuellar's Studio. Guest artist at "St. Croix Valley Potters' Tour". May 2009, North Shore Bank, Duluth, MN. A ten artist exhibit.

Oct 2007

Gallery Gen, New York City, NY. An exhibition with potters Warren & Nancy Mackenzie, Jeff Oestreich, Paul Dresang, Linda Christianson and Tim Crane.

May 2007

Grand Hand Gallery, St. Paul, MN. An Exhibition with potter Jim Grittner.

Dec 1999 - 2009

Minneapolis, MN. "A Weaver, A Potter, A Printer". A sale with Debbie Cooter, a weaver and Richard Stephans, a printmaker.

Sept - Oct 1997-2010

Northshore of Lake Superior. "Crossing Borders Studio Tour". An annual tour of eleven artists' studios featuring American and Canadian artists.

April 2006

Raymond Avenue Gallery, St. Paul, MN. "A Potter and A Weaver", a two person exhibit with Debbie Cooter, a fiber artist.

Dec 2005

Sivertson Gallery, Duluth, MN. "Northern Lights Invitational" exhibit.

Oct - Nov 2004

Grand Hand Gallery, St. Paul, MN. "Earth, Wood and Fire", a two person exhibit with Bob Carls, a wood turner.

Feb - March 2004

Santa Fe Clary, Santa Fe, NM. "For the Table", a national invitational dinnerware exhibition.

Nov 2003

Red Star Studios, Kansas City, MO. "Northern Utility", an invitational exhibit.

May 2003

Robert Briscoe Studio, Harris, MN. Guest artist at "St. Croix Valley Potters' Tour".

April - May 2003

Raymond Avenue Gallery, St. Paul, MN. "Art from Two Harbors", a two person exhibit with Debbie Cooter, a fiber artist.

April 2003

Northern Clay Center, Minneapolis, MN. "Tea for Two - or Twenty", an invitational exhibit.

April 2003

Sivertson Gallery, Duluth, MN. "Down and Dirty", an invitational ceramic exhibit.

Aug 2002

MacRostie Art Center, Tenth Annual hided Art Exhibition, First Place Award.

May 2002

Silver Works Gallery, Lawrence, KS. An exhibition of woodfire potters concurrent with the NCECA conference.

Sept - Oct 2001

Ripple River Gallery, Aitkin, MN. "Wood, Clay and Fire", a two person exhibit with Bob Carls, a wood turner.

June - July 2001

Flatland Gallery, Minneapolis, MN. "Earth....Exposed", a two person exhibit with Richard Stephans, a printmaker.

May 2001

Law Enforcement Center, Two Harbors, MN. "Lake County Artists". An invitational exhibit of seven artists.

Feb - April 1999

Thunder Bay Art Gallery, Thunder Bay, Ontario. "Borderline Fires: Same Road, Two Views." A two person exhibit with Fritz Lehmberg, a Canadian potter.


Other Activities:

July 2001 to July 2004

Board member of the Arrowhead Regional Arts Commission.

June 2002

One day workshop and demonstration, Edina Art Center, Edina, MN.

Aug 2002

Minneapolis, MN. "Uptown Art Fair". On site judge of ceramics category.

April 2001

One day workshop and demonstration with Jim Grittner, Professor of Art, University of Wisconsin, Superior. Duluth Art Institute, Duluth, MN.

2000-2001

Selection Panel member for two and three dimensional art, Minnesota State Arts Board.

March 2000

One day workshop and demonstration, Ceramic Department, University of Wisconsin, Superior.

Oct 1997-2000

A week-long woodfire workshop at my kiln, sponsored by the Duluth Art Institute.

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